Cloud Users Trust Systems Integrators More Than Vendors: Survey

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According to Yankee Group's "2010 FastView Survey: Cloud Computing Grows Up," enterprises want to make their cloud infrastructure similar to Amazon's or Google's, but only 17 percent of survey respondents view either vendor as a trusted cloud partner. Meanwhile, 29 percent of enterprises turn to systems integrators like Accenture, IBM and HP's EDS division and 23 percent look to vendors like Cisco and VMware. Eighteen percent of respondents said they rely on telecommunications companies like AT&T, BT, NTT and Verizon, while 13 percent leverage data center providers like Rackspace, Terremark and Savvis for their cloud computing infrastructure.

Yankee Group's survey queried more than 400 IT decision-makers in the U.S. at companies with 250 or more employees.

The survey also found that private or internal clouds are the preferred method for enterprises, with 67 percent noting that private clouds are their top choice. Virtual private clouds, or private clouds within a shared virtualized infrastructure, were second with 30 percent; while a fully managed public cloud took 28 percent, public cloud took 21 percent and a federation of public and private cloud infrastructures took 8 percent.

Overall, the survey found that enterprises are optimistic about cloud computing and that's good news for systems integrators offering cloud solutions. Yankee Group said 60 percent of respondents view cloud computing as a business enabler, versus less than 40 percent who say the technology will take years to mature, if it ever does. Those findings are a dramatic turnaround from the 2009 survey, which found just 37 percent of enterprises view cloud computing as an enabler and 63 percent were taking a wait-and-see approach and considering the cloud more smoke and mirrors and marketing hype than a viable technology.

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Breaking down the results further, 54 percent of respondents said cloud computing is an enabling technology that drives business transformation and innovation; 35 percent called cloud computing an evolving concept that will take years to mature; 7 percent of survey respondents said current cloud computing offerings aren't suitable for their organizations; and one percent said the cloud is no more than marketing hype.

More companies are also using cloud computing in production environments, Yankee Group's survey found. Fifty-five percent of respondents that have deployed or will deploy cloud computing soon said they are using the cloud for production-ready application deployment; 44 percent are using it for application development and testing; 44 percent for storage; and 43 percent for accessing extra compute power on demand. Additionally, 40 percent said they are using cloud computing for backup and disaster recovery; 39 percent for data mining and analysis; 30 percent for data base provisioning; and 26 percent for batch processing.